Super Savings Saturday
Today is the day I do my planning and shopping for the week ahead. I usually get a meal plan prepared after perusing the sale papers to see what the best deals are. I also cross reference several coupon match up sites like Wicked Cool Deals. Michelle is one of my favorite savings bloggers and I follow her religiously. She is localish to where I live, so she always posts match-ups for stores nearby. For my Maryland readers, Family Frugal Fun might have the best matchups for you. I also check Southern Savers and Coupon Divas frequently, particularly for drug store match-ups. (Drug store sales start on Sundays, so I do my planning today for tomorrow too. The early bird gets the last roll of toilet paper.)
After I have my meal plan done, my shopping list complete, and my coupons clipped, I make sure Out of Time Toddler and I are topped off, and we head out for our shopping trip. Toddler gets french fries on Saturday, so she’s usually a happy camper. (Trust me, I’ve been *that* mom with the screaming baby in the cart, trying desperately to get through the checkout without bursting into tears as well! It rarely goes as smoothly as I’d like. Armed with a pocket full of french fries is not the worst thing that can happen.) Today is not going to be a smooth one, though I’m hoping the trip will be quick. I wrenched my back this morning and am not looking to purchase a lot of groceries and lug them around. (While potentially chasing a naughty toddler too!)
Because of the aching back, I’ve switched the meal plan up for the week to decrease the number of items I’ll have to carry, and also built in a “night out” since I forgot that Valentines Day is Tuesday. Oops! I also have to pick up a couple extra items since I’m going to make something special for Out of Time Dad. (Shhh! Don’t tell!) The ability to be flexible with your plan is important. Having a few meals that you can prepare easily from the freezer/pantry are necessary for times when you really just can’t make it out for whatever reason, (back pain, cold/flu/virus, fear of killing someone in an Incredible Hulk-like display of PMS rage.) and will give you peace of mind knowing they are there.
Simple meals to have on hand: pasta and sauce, peanut butter and jelly “uncrustables”, soup either from a can or from the freezer, and my ultimate comfort food, mac and cheese. Try to build a few of those meals into your pantry/freezer “just in case”. You might want to also keep some jello and ginger ale on hand. I would have sold my soul a few weeks ago rather than have to send OOTDad out to the store for those items when I was sick.
Add a few items to your shopping list as you see them on sale. Soups are hot sale items right now, and you should be able to find some coupons for quick “just in case” meals here or here. (Convenience foods frequently have coupons for them, good luck finding them for veggies or fruit!) Let’s hope you don’t need the meals for illness or injury. Having them for a lazy night works too! Get prepared and have peace of mind knowing you’re ready for whatever crisis arise.